Monday, June 13, 2011

Rib Fest 2011

Yesterday two of my friends and I went to Ribfest at Lincoln/Damen/Irving Park in Chicago. The festival is exactly what the name implies: dozens of different varieties of ribs. As soon as we got there, one of the boys asked, "You're not still on your vegan diet, are you?" Fortunately for him and a relief for me - adding meat back into my diet increased the number of foods I could eat. By a lot.

We bought out tickets and started looking at all the stands. For $6 worth of tickets, you can get a sampler size - three rib bones. At every stand, I paid attention to what was on the menu and how people were handling the food. Sandwiches? I'll pass. No gloves? No thanks. I tried ribs from Corner 41 Bar & Grill. When I asked if they were gluten and dairy free (including soy sauce in my description since that was likely to be the biggest offender at an event like this), the man assured me that they were, rambled off a very comforting list, down to the vinegar used. I was sold. The ribs were very tender and delicious and had a slight kick to them.

It was really great to be able to eat at a street festival. As we ate our way up and down the festival, I ended up getting another sampler of ribs (nervous, however, since it took three people to answer my gluten free question, but the third one spoke with enough authority to comfort
me), corn on the cob, and strawberry lemon aid. The 28 Day Healthy Eating Challenge was getting to me - I needed my veggies. I was really frustrated that I couldn't have corn on the cob and asked at one stand if they put butter on it. Then my friend suggested I ask for it without butter. I did, it wasn't the same since I didn't have butter glistening on my chin, but you know what, corn is still tasty! We later passed by a huge crowd gathering around grilled asparagus. I'm craving vegetables! What happened? Three years ago, I would have just eaten ribs and ice cream. Now I am having semi-balanced food at a festival - meat, corn, fruity non-alcoholic beverages, and the rice crackers I stashed in my purse for some carbs!

My friends and I are planning on visiting some more street festivals this summer. I'm still impressed at how many options there are, even for people with food allergies and intolerances! (Now just to avoid people with their overflowing cups of beer...)

1 comment:

  1. Thanks for sharing about the vendor for ribs for gluten free. My family is heading out there today and I was trying to figure out what sort of food I will be able to eat there.